صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

All Saints, it having been previously dedicated to the Blessed Virgin. He was himself buried in the middle of the chancel, in a grave between five and sis feet deep, where his skeleton was found in the 3'ear 1794, in consequence of a search made by the late reverend Samuel Denne. This discovery terminated the contention long carried on among antiquaries, respecting the real burial place of this archbishop, which had been affirmed to lay in Canterbury cathedral. He " Jveth buried," says Weevcr, " accordUig to his will, here in his owne church, under a plaine grave stone, (a lowly tombe for suche an high-borne prelate,) upon which his pourtraiture is delineated."

The archbishop's pourtraiture, with the inscription, have been lost beyond memory; but the indents may yet be seen on the marble slab which covers his grave, and which has evidently been the upper stone of an altar tomb. On the south side of the chancel towards the altar, are the remains of four very elegant defaced stone seats, hidden by the monuments for the family of Astley. They are ornamented .with the arms of Courtenay, and Fitz Alan (otherwise named Arundel); by the latter of whom they were probably fmished: the amis of thcse archbishops, impaled with the arehiepiscopal bearings, are also on the roof of the nave. The antient wooden stalls used by the master, brethren, and other persons belonging to the college, still remain; and beneath the seats, arc carvings of human heads, grotesques and shields of arms of the Courtenay family.

An antient tomb still remains in the chancel, most shamefully defaced, said to contain one of the family of Widville, ancestors to Edward the Fourth's queen, who were possessors of the Mote. In the vaults several of the Astley and Marsham families lie buried; particularly Sir John Astley, knt. " wiiofrom his tender years attended on queen Elizabeth in her honourable band of pensioners, and was after master of the revells to king James and king Charles —Obiit, Januarii, 1639;" and " that great soldier and person of honour, Jacob lord Astley, baron of Reading," who died in February, 1051; these have monuments. There

[graphic]

tre several other memorials for the dead. The interior has been cleaned and whitewashed; is well pewed, and furnished with large galleries, and a good organ. Edward VI. permitted the inhabitants to use the church parochially; and James I. confirmed it to the parish by charter. Before the Reformation, the living was a rectory; it has since been accounted only a perpetual curacy. With the college were suppressed two chantries; one of which had been founded by Robert Vintner, in the time of Edward the Third; and the other by archbishop Arundel, in the reign of Henry the Fourth.

Rectors And Curates Of Eminence. John ManSell, 1264, chief justice of England, a privy councillor, chaplain to Henry III. keeper of the great seal, ambassador to France, and—a brave soldier I William De TyRington, 1394, afterwards bishop of St. David's, keeper of the privy seal, and treasurer of England. Josiah Woodward, S.T.P. ob. 1712, author of several curious tracts, sermons, &c.

The Bridge, of seven arches, over the Medway, is long and narrow, but very picturesque in appearance; it is very antient, and supposed to have owed its foundation, or at least its most considerable repairs and improvements, to the munificence of the archbishops of Canterbury.

The sudden thaw, and consequent overflowing of th« Medway, in January, J795, through the melting of the preceding snows, was very remarkable at this place. "Th» ice about Teston coming down in large sheets with the current, choaked up the arches of that bridge, and destroyed Bow Bridge. "The furious current, with its loaded surface, carried away the wooden bridges of Barnjett and St. Helen's, at Barming; resisted by that of East Farleigh, until its parapet walls gave way, the whole contents floated with, rapidity down the river, damaging the locks, and threatening Maidstone Bridge; but at length the loaded water, increased by the back river, rising higher than the walls, th« whole of the ice passed on: fortunately the frost of the en« suing night arrested the water on its way, and a more graVol. V. No. 1-11. H h , dual 4

dual thaw removed it without further mischief. Those wh» Jived in the houses near the river, were compelled to use boats in the street, and to take to their upper rooms, as their houses were several feet deep in water. The fields had a very extraordinary appearance from the vast sheets of ice which lay upon them, and had bent and kept down trees of considerable thickness. It was justly compared to the breaking up of the great frosts in North America.

The improvements made in this town since 1TJM, are numerous: an act was obtained for the purpose of its being new paved and lighted; and the several market places have been repaired, and the fish market rebuilt. The river Medway has been also much improved, by building a large lock beyond Allington Castle. Here, also, are four annual fairs, each of two days continuance, for the sale of horses, cattle, haberdashery, podlary, &c. They are mostly hel^ in a meadow, encircled with trees, and in the Wiigh Street; but the fair for horned cattle has been removed to Pinnenden Heath.

The buildings that have not yet been mentioned, are the Shire Hall, the Gaol for the western division of Kent, and the Conduit. The former is a good modern structure, in which the assizes for the county are held, and other public business transacted ;. was erected at the joint expenee of the corporation of Maidstone, and of thejusicesof the western division, who hold their quarterly sessions and county courts, as well as all other meetings on general business io this town: near to it is a prison called the Brambles, belonging to the corporation, bntanticntly the property of the archbishops of Canterbury. The Gaol, a spacious stone building, standing in East Lane, erected since the year 1741, in place of the more antient prison, which stood in the very centre of the town, has been much enlarged and strengthened: some excellent regulations have also been made for its government. The Conduit, forms the principal reservoir for the sBpply of the inhabitants, and stands on the upper end of the High Street; it was built 1624. Another Conduit stood in the middle of the High

•Street,

« السابقةمتابعة »